How to Leverage Talent Roles to Achieve Different Goals in Influencer Marketing


It is hard to think about someone more instrumental to WHOSAY’s creative strategy than Jenna Sereni. The influence marketer’s VP, of Marketing and Creative Services joined the firm over four and a half years ago when Instagram was still revving up, Snapchat didn’t exist and Facebook was just starting to target ads.

Jenna Sereni

Jenna Sereni


Fast forward to 2018, the year WHOSAY was acquired by Viacom, and a lot has happened both in the industry and the company, including over 600 successful influencer marketing campaigns that are disrupting the advertising industry as we know it, taking branded content beyond social media and into linear TV, and into brick and mortar stores with new Shopper Marketing initiatives.

You can get caught up with Jenna live at Advertising Week New York on Wednesday, October 3 at 4:30 pm ET in the panel “Influence Across Platforms.” But first, she kindly sat with us for an intimate Q&A where she shared some of her valuable insights.

WHOSAY: Why is the process of casting the right talent for an influencer marketing campaign so critical?

Jenna Sereni: Following best practices is extremely important in casting the right talent for a campaign for a number of reasons. You want to ensure that this talent not only is a good fit as far as audience and entertainment value, but ultimately that they are professional, will show up on time, will speak highly and authentically on behalf of the brand, and lastly, that they haven’t recently worked with a competitor.

WS: What do brands look for when working with talent and vice-versa?

JS: We find that brands often look for relevance and likeability. We like to encourage our partners to think about landing on a really strong creative idea, that many great talent will or can bring to life. A great talent can’t make a bad idea good.

It’s also essential to acknowledge the roles and goals of each type of talent. For example, an A-list celebrity is going to drive awareness via scale, while an influencer talent is going to drive engagement amongst a captive audience.

When looking for brand partners, I think talent look for an authentic connection. They look to partner with brands that they actually use, or would use in their everyday life. Talent knows that their fans are more likely to appreciate branded content if it feels like a truly genuine fit.

WS: What are the different types of creators with which WHOSAY works?

JS: WHOSAY works with every level of talent, from mommy bloggers and fitness instructors to up and coming Netflix stars, famous athletes, chef’s and designers, all the way up to A-list actors. We believe the right mix of talent is what causes a campaign to drive great results.

WS: What excites you about the future of influencer marketing?

I think it’s important to think about influencer marketing as just the tip of the spear, in a world of influence. If you think about it, brands have influence, people have influence, ideals have influence. Influencer marketing is the most relevant type of marketing right now because social platforms have surfaced a community of makers and creators who constantly speak with their audience.

I’m excited to see what happens next in the world of Voice technology -- I believe this is the next wave of the future of influence marketing. What if Alexa could be a voice of influence in everyday matters such as “Where should I go to buy x product?” or “What’s the most romantic yet affordable travel destination?” It’s a wild time we live in, anything could happen next!